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From "Scott Sanders" <>
Subject RE: [Digester] Supporting mixed content
Date Mon, 07 Jan 2002 21:50:28 GMT
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Craig R. McClanahan [] 
> Sent: Saturday, January 05, 2002 11:02 AM
> To: Jakarta Commons Developers List
> Subject: Re: [Digester] Supporting mixed content
> On Sat, 5 Jan 2002, robert burrell donkin wrote:
> > Date: Sat, 5 Jan 2002 13:50:57 +0000
> > From: robert burrell donkin <>
> > Reply-To: Jakarta Commons Developers List 
> > <>
> > To: Jakarta Commons Developers List <>
> > Subject: Re: [Digester] Supporting mixed content
> >
> > hi scott
> >
> > i'm always pretty reluctant about changes to the basic Rule 
> interface.
> >
> I share this reluctance.  The kinds of documents that 
> Digester does best at tend to be either all-attributes or 
> all-body-content, and I don't want to lose the simplicity 
> that's present for those kinds of cases.

I agree.  The reason I bring this up is that a) Digester is the easiest
thing I have ever used to represent config information, and b) I want to
continue to improve/enhance it to handle all my config cases.  The
simplicity is the important thing.

> In general, I think of Digester as a nice wrapper around 
> *SAX* parsing, not around DOM manipulation, and it is best 
> used when you are using pattern matching techniques to grab 
> out what you want and ignoring the rest.  The use case Scott 
> describes might be easier to deal with using something like 
> DOM4J or JDOM.

Yes, it would be easier to deal with in DOM4j or JDOM right now, but not
without a fair bit of code.  I am looking to capitalize on the
simplicity of Digester here.  The DOM analogy was just that.

Right now, I am coding and thinking, and I have just moved the firing of
the body() function to the characters() method and away from the
endElement() method.  Nothing in Rule has changed, and the tests pass.
Still thinking, but it is looking like it will work without changing the


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